Like any good TV shows, there are two things that make it successful—great writing and an unstoppable cast. To begin with there's the incredibly witty and original writing by creators Christopher Lloyd and Steven Levitan. They give the characters lines like "The iPad comes out on my actual birthday. It's like Steve Jobs and God got together to say, 'we love you, Phil.'" Or Cameron dressed as Fizbo saying, "You know people are going to stare, they're not used to seeing one clown in a car."
But those lines would fall flat without the impeccable acting chops of cast members like Ty Burrell, Ed O'Neill, Sophia Vergara, and Julie Bowen—each just as talented as the next. And perhaps proof of this statement is that every adult member of the cast was nominated for an Emmy this year (with the sad oversight of Ed O'Neill).
One of the most hilarious Modern Family pairings is that of Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet who play gay couple and newly adoptive parents Mitchell and Cameron. They have just the right mixture of flamboyantly over the top with a down to earth realness that makes them believable and not too sitcomy.
We were at the Emmys on the red carpet and we spoke with Jesse about playing a gay character on TV and who his early role model was. Here's his reply in this video we shot on behalf of the Archive of American Television.